Cartoon Canines in the Dog Days (or, “If You Love Me ‘Arf!’ as Much as I Love You …”)

The Old Farmer’s Almanac tells us the dog days of summer end on August 11th (having begun on July 3rd). So — with a week to go before the odds increase of one noticing it’s getting dark a wee bit sooner, there’s an occasional tinge of coolness in the air, and that the wimpiest leave are showing just a hint of color — we thought we’d take a look at some of our favorite four-legged comic strip stars to send the dog days out in style!

From the early summer of 1991, a Sunday Blondie strip in which family pet Daisy gets pampering from her doggie-daddy, Dagwood.
Fifty-two years earlier — at the start of July, 1939 — Gran’ma and “Cap” Stubbs are planning to vacation at a swank seaside hotel. For days Gran’ma is adamant that Tippie can’t join them on their holiday — but Tippie proves he knows how to get his way.
Disney’s Pluto as an action star? You bet, Red Ryder! In the midst of an adventure featuring the alien “Eega Beeva,” Pluto dives in to rescue his master, Mickey, only to need a little saving, himself!
July 18, 1953 finds Sandy and his scrappy mistress on the run and headed for an encounter with –gypsies! For some reason my own dog likes this strip best — but after all, her name is Gypsy …
Though these final two entries didn’t originally appear during the dog days, they [A] do feature dogs and [B] are too interesting to pass up. Above: from New Year’s Day, 1946, Fifi accompanies Jiggs through one of George McManus’s most clever gags. Below: Camp Swampy’s tough-dog mascot Otto is featured in a strip that offended the sensibilities of this employee of the Owensboro, Kentucky Messenger-Inquirer in this June, 1987 editorial piece.

Who are your favorite dog characters from comic strips or animated cartoons? Leave a comment and let us know!

3 thoughts on “Cartoon Canines in the Dog Days (or, “If You Love Me ‘Arf!’ as Much as I Love You …”)

  1. Pingback: Cat-apulting into the Limelight – Library of American Comics

  2. Bruce Canwell says:

    Hi, Loretta! Our own hardcover collection of “CAP” STUBBS AND TIPPIE features a year’s worth of fine newspaper strip boy-&-his-dog stories, and it’s still available from quality booksellers everywhere. In terms of comic books, we’re aware of a relatively recent Image Comics series called STRAY DOGS (the first issue is available to read on-line). And back issue sellers may still be able to offer copies of 1950s Dell LASSIE or RIN TIN TIN comic books, or DC’s REX THE WONDER DOG. Good luck in your searching!

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